The thing that strikes me the most about being in my 40s, is how unlike my mother I am when she was my age. She was sensible, practical, frugal and frumpy. The generation gap between her and her kids seemed huge – I think it fair to say she did not connect with her children, which probably explains why 2 ½ out of 4 of her kids don’t speak to her (2 outright have no relationship with her, 1 does but she is a carbon copy of our mother and out of touch with her own kids, and I represent the ½, as I’m barely talking to her- more on that in future blogs).
We forty somethings have a lot more in common with our kids. That’s not to say we want to be like them (hell no) but our fashion is not altogether dissimilar ( Zara, Mango and Asos still work for me) nor our taste in music and social media helps to bridge the gap. Whereas my parents lived to work, I absolutely work to live. My mother would be mortified if she knew how much I spend on my hair, nails and waxing and how little I have set aside for a rainy day (I just about have enough should it drizzle). As long as my bills are paid and there’s enough money for groceries throughout the month, the rest of my salary is well…..for me.
The time I have wasted fretting about being middle aged, what a waste – it seriously is no big deal, nothing has changed, I am still very much the person I was when I was in my 30s, 40 is definitely the new 30! The one area where perhaps I have fallen behind is my relationship with social media . I was in my mid 30s when FB came on the scene, and I remember being added by my friend. Far from thinking how great it is to “connect”, I thought it was a load of old shit. I didn’t need to connect with my friends as we were, wait for it…… already friends and I sure as hell wasn’t interested in connecting with those who weren’t my friends. At that time (I’m not sure if it is the case now), people used to post how they were feeling- fucking ridiculous.
Having said that, it was only up until about 2 years ago, that I came off FB, I had finally had enough of people posting pics of their damn dinner. I didn’t feel that I was missing out by not having a “social media presence”, until quite recently when I’ve heard it said how weird people are if they haven’t got one- really??!! I certainly don’t feel weird – If anything I feel free that I don’t have to confirm, it’s ok for me to photographed more than once, wearing the same dress. I get that there is a generation which has grown up with social media so it’s their normality, however if anything, I find it a little weird when my peers, have no life outside social media- weirdos.
I have a friend who keeps sending me random videos from whichever site and its annoying- even as I am typing this blog, she has sent me vid of a man holding a dildo and ready to do whatever with it (I stopped watching). Yes it can be funny but it can make grown folk juvenile as fuck (she barely knows what Brexit is – she should and she’s nearly 50 godammit). However as a result of this blog, I’ve had to get up to speed with Instagram and twitter, so bear with me.
Apart from this decidedly middle aged rant, I don’t identify with the term middle aged, everything associated with it is old and it’s not clear to me why some parts of the media, and advertisers, have not caught up with the generational shift (if I can call it that) especially when you have the likes of Gabrielle Union, Jada Pinkett Smith, Jennifer Lopez and Jennifer Aniston, to name but a few, who are still rocking it in their 40s. Yet advertisers are still assuming that we have more in common with Lorraine Kelly.
The reality is that this is the time of our lives (I get that there will be those who don’t agree) but for many of us, we have grown up kids who although may still be living at home, we now have our freedom- the days of asking folk to babysit for us, are a thing of the past, for some of us, we are a lot better off than we were when we were in our 30s. Some of us will have gone through divorce and are much better for it.
This does not mean that all is rosy- being 40 and fabulous has its drawbacks e.g. whilst we are busy being fabulous, getting our hair done, shellac-ing the hell out of our nails, threading, waxing etc, etc, our 40 something male counterparts are doing fuck all except for growing, bald and fat, not making half the effort we do. Often this means we are not attracted to men our own age and men younger than us may find us too fabulous to handle. The pool for us is small indeed and often despite our better judgement, we entertain the lowest form of pond life (broke, mean, liars, intellectually challenged- I could go on- see future blogs ).
Believe it or not, we are still growing.
I’m here to tell you that life in the 40s is more than alright.
see future blogs for being 40 and our relationships with friends, family, men, work and more.